An ordinary day of my drafted years in South Korea

Contributor: Yongsan Legacy Team

The 570th Ord Co Das was a “Working” camp and had none of the military harassment. We had “young Korean House Boys” that cleaned the…

Topic: Draft, Food, People, Uncategorized, Yongsan Legacy
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The 570th Ord Co Das was a “Working” camp and had none of the military harassment. We had “young Korean House Boys” that cleaned the barracks and kept our shoes clean and shined!  No K.P.!   I liked that environment!

570th Ord Co (DAS) batch from 1958 _South Korea (Niblo Barracks)

The respect that came from the NCO’S and officers, and the military life style seemed relaxed.

At the 570thOrd co (DAS), DURING 1958 AND 1959, days for the enlisted personnel began with reveille, at 7 am, followed by morning chow in the company mess hall. I can’t remember what time we reported to our work stations, but it was shortly after breakfast.

I was the manager of shop one, but for some reason I can’t remember if I opened the shop or if one of the Korean supervisors opened the shop?  I do remember that as winter approached, I was sent to school for a few classes on starting and using the heaters that we used to heat the shop.

During the winter I would go to the shop and start the heaters, then stand reveille, eat breakfast, then report for work.

Shop one had 10 bays, with one Korean civilian and one G.I. working in each bay.  Early on I also attended a few weeks of classes on, basic supervision. I still have these papers stored with my memories from South Korea.

The day would end for enlisted men with the shop being closed at 5 p m. The Korean civilians were inspected at the main gate as they left for home; to be sure they were not taking anything out with them, such as auto parts, or tools… remember that Korea was a very poor country back then and some people really struggled for surviving.

The G.I.’S, If you had no extra duty, such as guard duty, or charge of quarters, you were free until the next morning at 7 am.

We had no civilian clothes and could not eat or drink anything off base!  Illness was too much of a risk!  You can’t believe the SHOTS we took before leaving for Korea! All G.I.’S would wash up (we had no bathrooms) and report to the mess hall for evening chow as close to 5 pm as we could. We were free until 7 am the next morning. After washing up we usually dress in clean army work cloths because we could wear work clothes off base.

Most G.I.’s, like myself that had steady mooses, (name given to our Korean girlfriends), coming from a Japanese word, moosemay, were also working the black market.  We would go into the camp p.x., and buy things that was on a list that our girl friends had given us the night before, using the money our girl friend had given us, and if the list was quite large we would use our duffel bags to carry the items up the hill to the village, arriving at our girlfriends hooch.  I would repeat this routine every night for weeks, sometimes months, never sleeping in the barracks. We were actually encouraged to sleep in the village during really cold winter nights because in 1958 the barracks had no heat!   This is the way each day would end for me.